With collective prayers, we’ll win war against kidnapping, banditry ―Gowon 

FORMER military head of state, General Yakubu Gowon has said that with collective and concerted prayers from all Nigerians irrespective of religion or ethnicity, the country will win the war against armed banditry, kidnapping and other social ills bedevilling the corporate existence of the country.

He made the assertion at a one-day prayer rally to seek God’s intervention held at the Calvary Life Assembly, Nomansland, Kano. The theme, “Awake, put on strength the arm of the Lord” drew participants came from Sokoto, Zamfara, Katsina, Kebbi, Jigawa States and other parts of the Northwest region.

Gowon said, “We need God intervention to bail us out of the predicaments facing us as a nation.”

Established in 1996, Nigeria Prays has continued to mobilise and sensitise Nigerians, particularly the church, to pray for the nation, leaders and entire citizenry against all hurdles bedevilling the nation.

Gowon, who is the chairman and convener of Nigeria Prays, spoke virtually. He added that “Our gathering in Kano today is an expression of our love and faith in our country Nigeria for God to hear our prayer and heal the land.”

“We are bringing before our Lord the myriads of our problems: insecurity, banditry, murders, political, economic and social problems. God, help us find solution to all these problems that have given our country a bad image.

“Lord, hear our sincere confession of our wrongs in the past and present and forgive us as a people and nation. We ask for forgiveness and mercy. Lord, heal our nation and heal us individually and collectively,” the ex-head of state prayed.

General Gowon at the event prayed for President Muhammadu Buhari, Kano State Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje and other leaders in the country.

Optimistic that Nigeria will overcome the worrisome disability confronting it, he urged the Christian faithful not to renege on their faith in God.

Speaking at the occasion, Bishop Ransom Bello, the minister in charge of Calvary Life described it as unfortunate that Nigeria was becoming poor despite its rich background.

He said, “We want a change – not a political change but a change for a better Nigeria in the interest of all, where there is no tribalism, nepotism, corruption and insecurity; but where there is peace, good leaders and buoyant economy?”

According to him, “Security should not be left in the hands of the military alone. We, as a religious institution, have done our part which is through prayers which I believe will put the factions of the country together. So, every concerned person should do his part without being silent.

“Gowon, a general, knows that this kind of battle can never be won only with the use of guns and other material weapons. That is why he convened this prayer meeting.”

Guest speaker Bishop Zakka Nyam recalled how when growing up he would traverse parts of the country at any time of the day without running into the hands of bandits.

He said: “I would arrive in Sokoto at night and sleep anywhere, wake up at 5am, brush and eat bread and hit the road and arrive my village safely without being molested.”

 

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